The Cincinnati Bengals signed head coach Marvin Lewis to a two-year contract extension Tuesday, running through the 2014 season.
Lewis has led the Bengals to the playoffs in two of the last three seasons, including 2011, and to three postseasons overall, with two AFC North Division championships.
“Coming off a playoff finish last year, with a solid coaching staff and good young players, continuity at the top gives us our best chance to do well,” said Bengals president Mike Brown, according to the team’s press release. “We are excited about the team’s prospects and happy to have completed this process with Marvin before the 2012 preseason schedule begins.”
Lewis is in his 10th season as head coach in Cincinnati, already the most in franchise history. He ranks third in the NFL in longest current tenure with one team, behind only to head coaches Andy Reid of the Philadelphia Eagles and Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots.
The Bengals are one of only 10 teams, less than a third of the NFL, to have reached the postseason twice in the last three years. The young Thundercats also are in a minority of teams (15) to have qualified for postseason three times in the last seven seasons.
Lewis is a teacher of defensive discipline, advising defenders not to gamble on plays, but be effective in the zone they are protecting. His method helped the Baltimore Ravens to win a Super Bowl in Charm City for the 2000 NFL season.
Since then, Lewis probably has been longing for a group of willing individuals, similar to the Ravens when he was in Baltimore, to buy into his proven system.
With the young, willing, talented group of hungry players the Bengals have, Lewis’ goal of winning in Cincinnati appears to be a reality.
“The team we have for this year is as exciting and intriguing as any one I’ve had,” said Lewis. “Our goal is to win the Super Bowl, nothing less, and it’s great to have this extension in place. We have a lot of work to do in order to maximize the potential we have, and it’s exciting to me to come work at it every day. (Wife) Peggy and I love living in Cincinnati, and we love the support our fans give us. Thanks to everyone who has helped make all this happen.”